Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, heart related health problems have increased significantly in the UK

Heart disease presents in a variety of different ways and can be caused by many different factors. Potential causes of heart disease range from an inherited tendency to heart disease to acquired forms of heart disease, which in turn may be influenced lifestyle factors such as diet and levels of exercise.

Atrial fibrillation is an all-too-common problem. While the exact cause of the heart rhythm problem are not fully understood, there are certain risk factors which increase the likelihood of suffering from atrial fibrillation. Atrial fibrillation is common in people with other heart conditions and this is a cause for concern when considering the health-related impact of lockdown on some individuals.

There is no doubt that lockdown has inspired lots of people to take up more exercise and pursue active hobbies. However, it is also clear that some people have struggled to manage their health and (in numerous cases) have been afraid to access health services due to fear of contracting coronavirus.

While atrial fibrillation is not exclusively related to a person’s physical health, lifestyle factors that influence physical health have been associated with the risk of atrial fibrillation. Being over-weight due to a sedentary lifestyle increases susceptibility to developing atrial fibrillation. Drinking alcohol in excess also increases risk of developing atrial fibrillation. On the other hand, the condition has also been known to affect high profile athletes at the peak of physical fitness.

As society has begun to return to some semblance of normality, and health services are becoming more accessible, the rates of heart related diseases are beginning to be understood and the UK has seen significant increases in both heart related cases and mortality. While these data have not focused specifically on atrial fibrillation, they highlight the unmet need for treatment of heart-related diseases.

Fortunately, there are a number of different treatment options available for atrial fibrillation patients. Some treatments can be initiated by your GP, while more specialist care is available from cardiologists with a specialist interest in heart rhythm abnormalities. In addition to medications, catheter ablation is an effective procedure that could potentially cure atrial fibrillation. 

Cardiovascular care is always of the utmost importance, particularly at this present time when health is at the forefront of people’s minds. Manchester is particularly fortunate in this respect as there are so many fantastic opportunities for exercise including cycling, skiing, jogging and water sports. This city really does have world class facilities and they are complimented by a high class of healthcare services.